Bike of the Week: Classified Moto's Honda Nighthawk

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Categories: Real Rides, Bike Of The Week

John Ryland of Classified Moto has produced another classy custom Honda Nighthawk 750 with his team in Richmond, Virginia.  Many of their signature sporty modifications remain, but subtle changes have been made to this year’s bike.

Ryland still prefers the simple, reliable 92’ Honda Nighthawk motor and frame because they are easy to work on and even easier to find.  Plus, they look perfect in Classified’s infamous bare-metal appearance.

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Classified’s team left the original Nighthawk swing arm and rear wheel in place, while upgrading the suspension with Progressive reservoir shocks.  Ryland created a custom CNC-machined aluminum air intake, which not only allows the big four-cylinder to breathe easier, but created a large open space under the seat.

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Although this model is simpler than last year’s Honda build, which rocked a single-sided Ducati Multistrada swingarm and Hypermotard shock, the open body allows room for storage.

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This model has inspired Ryland to design his own luggage.  Resembling an odd-shaped briefcase, his prototype can be perfectly fitted under the rider’s seat inside the frame, like the final piece of a puzzle.  Thin and flat, tucked behind the engine, these bags will prevent any drag while riding.

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Stolen from a Yamaha YZF-R6R, the front end has been on a lot of Classified bikes. This one carries their signature gold forks with Triple Tree Conversion, giving the bike its familiar flashy sass. The handle bars have been switched with an aluminum set originally intended for the dirt.  These position the rider’s hands wide and low, encouraging the rider to flick the solid street bike around urban corners allowing it to feel as nimble as a motocross bike.

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The seat has a smooth, thin cushion and soft, flat base, custom upholstered in jet black, with just enough length for a petite passenger. The foot pegs remain slightly out front putting the rider in the standard UJM position, despite the stretched-out café racer appearance. This bike is easier on the back, hands, and rear, allowing for a more comfortable, lengthy commute.

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In addition to the hardcore black powder-coated frame, flashy gold forks, and elegant seat, the finished appearance of this beautiful bike lies in the nickel plated CB400 tank and Vance and Hines pipes.  The four-to-one modified exhaust gives the bike a sound sexy enough to match its cool, smooth form.

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Classified’s Nighthawk is more than just a bike.  It’s a performing work of art.  Although it looks like an old relic, it rides like a new machine, and echoes a penetrating sound your body will never forget.

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